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My Mother, The Emotional Vampire

May16

by

Hey Amy!

I’ve been reading the Smackdown for years and bookmarking all the posts that I think I’d need when I get pregnant (pretty much all of them). I haven’t seen anything with this, so hopefully I’m not repeating anything.

Some background: my mother has always been childlike and dependent on my sister and I for emotional support and her self-esteem. I grew up being her support system, and I’ve always been a little resentful of the fact that I had to mother my mother. She tries, she means well, she’s just “an emotional black hole”, as my sister puts it.

I got married in August, and since getting engaged have been asked constantly by my family about when we’re going to have a baby. It would be the first grandchild for my mom’s side of the family, and a VERY wanted grandchild…none of my older cousins want kids, and my sister is younger and not on the baby track. My mother makes it a point to tell me about every other person that has made a pregnancy announcement that she knows, and that all her coworkers have been asking when she’ll be a grandmother.

So, I’m now 5 weeks pregnant. My mother suspects something, and when I went home for Easter, told me about another friend of hers that has a pregnant daughter, and “of course, she told her mother right away when she knew.”

I haven’t told my mom (we found out two weeks ago), and I’m conflicted about telling her at all before 3 months. On the one hand, telling her could bring us closer because she might be able to support me through some of the more stressful things (since she’s obviously done this before), but on the other hand, I don’t want to feel like I’m being used for fulfillment and guilted into telling her just because she wants to be told. I’ve had this convo with my husband, and he just supports whatever I decide to do.

I guess my question is: should I just suck it up and tell my mom because it’ll make her happy and proud? If I do, how do I set boundaries so I feel like I’m being supported instead of used? If I DON’T tell her until 3 months are up, how do I explain why? Would I be making a mistake and throwing away my chance to really connect with her over this?

Or, am I just being way too dramatic and the news will just come out when the time is right and it doesn’t really matter in the long run anyway?

Gah! Thanks,
Conflicted

Coming from a long family line of subtle guilt trippers (of course, your friend’s perfect daughter told her mother right away, because of course she did, and that’s not a strange or overly specific detail to drop into this particular conversation, Mom, not in the SLIGHTEST), you have my personal support — whatever that’s worth — for keeping your news to yourself until whenever the hell you want. It’s your pregnancy, your news, your decision.

On the other hand, if you mostly don’t want to tell her because you’re trying to turn your pregnancy into some kind of Point, to basically shut your mom out as payback for years of putting up with years of emotional entanglements, or to hold the news hostage because you’re tired of being constantly and passive aggressively nagged about babies (which to be fair, is not a thing that’s unique to your mother)…you might want to step back and examine your own motives. Are you really setting boundaries, or are you just continuing the cycle of emotional mind games? Your mom finds all her meaning in life and support and self-worth in her daughters, which is an EXHAUSTING role to play. But is specifically withholding this news from her helping with any of that? Or is it just stressing you out completely because every interaction with her — like saying, “Mom, guess what, I’m pregnant!” — has become a game of Emotional Battleship?

(A game that your mom might not even realize you’re playing, if she’s never been called on her shit, or at least shut down when she nags and cajoles and tells you oddly apropos story after story and her Friend’s Daughter’s Roommate’s Cousin who took HER mom with her to every OB appointment and let her cut the cord, HONEY. “Mom, when we have news we’re ready to share, we’ll tell you. But the more you bug me, the less I want to discuss this topic with you at all, okay?”)

(“Oh, but I was just TELLING you about my FDRC because I thought it was INTERESTING, I didn’t MEAN anything by it.”)

(“Of course you didn’t. Do you think it’s going to rain today?”)

(Annnnd scene.)

The thing is, no matter when you tell your mom, you’ll have many months of pregnancy left, and a lifetime of trying to balance her emotional needs with your own — and with your child’s, as you attempt to forge a healthier relationship with him/her than the one you were modeled as a child. Waiting until 13 weeks won’t turn your mom into someone she’s not. Best case, she’s so genuinely happy for you (and herself!) that she won’t fixate on the week number. When she asks how far along you are just give her your due date to maybe skim over the exact math. (You also don’t have to tell her how long you’ve known. You found out about as early as biologically possible, it sounds like, but plenty of pregnancies aren’t picked up on until quite a few weeks later.) But from that point on, you’re still going to be doing the work of boundary setting and conversation ending and probably some call-avoiding. Help! My mom wants to come to ultrasounds with us! And be in the delivery room! And live with us for a month postpartum! GAH.

Worst case, yeah, she’s hurt and overly emotional about it and goes sobbing to your sister and her friends and looking for reassurance that she’s a good person who deserved better from you. That’s on her, though. That’s the kind of guilt she’s good at saddling on you, in hopes of controlling your future behavior in order to avoid feeling that guilt again. If you feel like this is the right moment to break free of that Pavlovian response and kick the guilt to the curb, do it. As childlike as she may seem, she’s a grown-ass woman. She’ll live.

Wow, I’ve just talked in so many circles I’m feeling kind of dizzy. And there’s probably no real advice here. So I’ll close with some: If you haven’t spent some time with a professional therapist to help deal with your mother and the emotional baggage she’s basically dumped on you since birth, now is a really good time to do so. Or to do so again, for a little refresher, as you’re preparing to become a mother yourself. Pregnancy has a way of digging up old anxieties and insecurities and just DUMPING them on you all at once, out of the blue. So that’s fun.

It sounds like you have a good support system in your sister, but she won’t be able to understand everything that’s going to happen in the next eight months and beyond. And while your mother’s been pregnant and had babies, it’s pretty obvious that she’s NOT capable of truly supporting anyone without going all emotional vampire on them, sooner or later. The fact that you’re holding out hope that maybe, MAYBE this time will be magically different (provided that you cave one last time and tell her your news on her terms, not yours) suggests that you might benefit from talking to a neutral third party on a regular basis about her, and boundaries, and motherhood in all its (dysfunctional and wonderful) forms. And then you can really focus on nurturing yourself, your marriage, your child, rather than being sucked dry by your past.

Art Source: by Alex Katz

About the author

Amalah

http://www.amalah.com
Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy's daily mothering adventures at Amalah. Also, it's pronounced AIM-ah-lah.

If there is a question you would like answered on the Advice Smackdown, please submit it to amyadvice@gmail.com.

Amy also documented her second pregnancy (with Ezra) in our wildly popular Weekly Pregnancy Calendar, Zero to Forty.

Amy is mother to rising first-grader Noah, preschooler Ezra, and toddler Ike.


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27 Responses to “My Mother, The Emotional Vampire”

  1. Holly May 16 at 6:43 pm Reply Reply

    Aha! This almost EXACT situation is my husband’s mother and her two daughters. We had the first grandkid, told all the grandparents soon after we found out (about 5 weeks). A few months later, my SIL was also pregnant (though nearly 11 weeks by the time she realized). She didn’t want to tell her mom because of all the emotional drama she knew it would cause. Ended up telling her siblings at about 15weeks, and her mom at about 18weeks. MIL was NOT HAPPY. “Don’t the grandmothers usually find out sooner than this?!?!?” My SIL= “Yeah, well, maybe, but now you know, so.” I mean, really, what can MIL do at that point? Of course, years later, she’s over it. The usual emotional drama is all still there, just now grandchildren are also in the picture. Fun.

  2. Cait May 16 at 6:58 pm Reply Reply

    I will say that while I can’t classify either MIL or my mom as “emotional vampires” they do both have their *moments* of being completely emotionally manipulating assholes. MIL started in with OMG BABIES the week after I got engaged, my mom generally knows better then to say to much out loud because I shut that shit down hard when I was a teenager. 

    All that being said, I am carrying the first grand baby on both sides and am therefore a blanket for all opinions, concerns, thoughts and anything else they can come up with and I deal but I deal on my terms. Which is usually a lot of nodding as I do what I want. I choose not to tell either family (or anyone) until I was sure of viability b/c I have had way to many close friends and relatives loose babies only weeks after the big announcement and I couldn’t deal with that. Around the same time DH got a new job and we had to plan a big move away from the in-laws, which they were devastated about. I got to hear for about 3 weeks about how awful it would be because we were moving and they would never see their (still fictional) grandchildren. 

    *head desk* 

    AT ANY RATE! Once I did announce no body gave a crap about the timing, they didn’t even ask. There were just so many *emotions* on both sides and mostly they were just happy. Though as Amy said, the requests to come to ultrasounds, move in for a month and the rest started pretty much immediately so ya know, prepare thyself. I was always able to duck the ultrasound requests by blaming the doctor (oh course she said no one but the father, that mean old doctor) and I let DH handle his mom’s expectation of staying any longer then a week, because no, while my mom can’t stay longer because she works and has other obligations at her own house. 

    Just ride the wave, decide your stances early and then politely but firmly stick to them. Talk it out with your hubby, present a united front on everything and like Amy said, don’t be afraid to talk to someone else if you need to, becuase this pregnancy shizz is hard. *hugs lady* 

  3. Rachel May 16 at 7:09 pm Reply Reply

    I would just like to point out that it sounds like if you tell your mom the news now that she may blab it to the world, so that might also be something to consider if you want to keep it private. And by the way, congrats!

  4. Stephanie May 16 at 7:22 pm Reply Reply

    5 weeks is super early. There is no reason to tell your mom that soon unless you actually want to.

    I’m not sure when we did tell our parents, but I know it was after 5 weeks. I had to beg my mom not to tell anyone, and she actually kept her promise (which surprised me!), even though it was killing her.

  5. susan May 16 at 8:57 pm Reply Reply

    Sadly, grandchildren don’t fix grandparents. My mom is vaguely similar to yours (she’s pretty self-absorbed) and last weekend when my 4 year old daughter broke her foot, my mom said that she was having a clumsy week, too, and that she’d broken a few dishes the night before. Like that’s even remotely similar or effing appropriate to say! 

    So yeah. Do what you want to do when it feels right for you. Otherwise you’ll spend the rest of your life trying to guess what will give you the best mom-outcome. And that’s not where your energy is best spent. 

  6. Chiara May 16 at 9:20 pm Reply Reply

    5 weeks is still pretty early in the grand scheme of things. I waited until 9 weeks to tell my mom and it went fine (we don’t always have the best relationship), but one of the things I considered when I was deciding who to tell, was whether or not that person would be helpful to me if I had an early miscarriage. I know it’s a bit of a downer thought, but traditionally that’s why you wait to tell people until 2nd trimester, is because of the higher risk of miscarriage in the first trimester. And miscarriages can be tough things to deal with, without having to deal with a mother who makes it about her instead of you. 

  7. Lisa May 17 at 2:07 am Reply Reply

    Who you tell before the second trimester is who you wouldn’t mind knowing if you miscarry. Imagine that you tell no one, and this beloved, wanted pregnancy miscarries (sorry for the imagery, but this is exactly the reason why people wait to say anything until they’re ‘in the clear’) who would you tell? Would you tell your mother? Would she be at all helpful in your time of need? Or would she make it about her, and how hurt she is that you didn’t *trust* her and maybe you don’t *love* and somehow you end up apologizing for not sharing incredibly personal, private information that she is not actually entitled to? (And pressuring a woman into parenthood and then passive-aggressively bugging her about the state of her womb? Oh that is so rude.)

    On the other hand, pregnancy goes just fine, and early July-ish? you share your happy news… And you mother says that you didn’t *trust* her and you don’t *love* her and her FDRC would never do this to *her* mother.

    You’re 5 weeks along. Sooooo much could happen, it’s your body and your child. It’s so early. It’s perfectly OK to be scared and cautious and wary of sharing maybe-uncertain news. Your baby, your decision. 

    Really, just try to figure out how much of a damn you actually give. Sounds like your mother’s going to be a bit of a burden no matter what you choose… Good luck!

  8. Jessica May 17 at 2:39 am Reply Reply

    I agree with Chiara.  I was given the advice (which I took) which was that you should tell the people who you would want to support you if something went wrong.  If your mom is not on that list, then she’s not.  

    • Cara May 27 at 12:12 am Reply Reply

      Dear God, yes.  This winter I miscarried at nine weeks, never having heard a heartbeat.  We were so very glad we had only told immediate family.  And even telling that few people was tough.  (But, important.  They were our support system.) If your Mom would make a miscarriage about her, please please at least wait until you hear the heartbeat.  That’s a critical milestone and not nearly so long as the entire trimester if you don’t think you can or want to go that long.

  9. Tasterspoon May 17 at 4:32 am Reply Reply

    Agree with prior commenters re her supportiveness in the event of miscarriage, and also whether you think she’d blab it to everyone ELSE you might not want to know about something going wrong.

    That said, I told my mother (with whom I have similar, but probably not as significant, issues) in private and in person on a family visit at about 10 weeks and made her promise that it was ‘just between us’ until 12 weeks. I was shocked that she did keep it a secret but, as hard as it was for her, I know it put her over the moon to be entrusted with that, and, for at least that interval, she was SO thrilled and SO on my team that it was totally the right call for us. If it would make your mom really happy without really doing you any harm, giving her this might pay dividends down the road.

  10. Elli May 17 at 11:35 am Reply Reply

    5 *weeks*? Congratulations, and omg, your mom must be extra fun if you’re already worried that she didn’t know 2 weeks ago. I did tell our parents when we got the official nod at 4 weeks, but they would be supportive if something happened. If they told anybody else, then it would have been them who had to make the sadder calls. (As it was, we didn’t even tell them that we were having IVF, though they knew we’d have to)

    A sister is the dramatic one, but we chose to tell her the same day we told our parents, because we felt that the drama of being told after everybody else would be worse than the drama of her knowing longer. In the end she was pretty cool, but then she’s matured since mom died. Nor was she ever an emotional black hole, maybe a neutron star in prior days…

  11. Elli May 17 at 11:41 am Reply Reply

    I meant pulsar, the kind that send out waves of energy at regular intervals.

  12. Liz May 17 at 1:13 pm Reply Reply

    May I suggest looking at this list of traits of narcissm? I never thought my mom was, because I thought it meant “conceited” – but it’s more complex than that. Once I started googling “narcisstic mother” the light shone in and I saw the situation more clearly and was better able to deal with my mom, because she got so much worse during my pregnancy and when the baby arrived. Your announcement is just the beginning of a long line of baby-battles with your mom, so draw the boundaries early.
    http://parrishmiller.com/narcissists.html

  13. Caroline May 17 at 3:02 pm Reply Reply

    I would leave it a bit, maybe till you hit 8-9 weeks, maybe after your next OB appointment. If she wants to know why, you just say ”oh we didn’t tell anyone till we were sure it was okay” and leave it at that.
    Then for the rest, you must now NOW shut down this self-absorbed manipulation. There is no time like the present. You clearly cannot change a person but you can change your reaction, and obsessing over something like this is exactly the trap you have been roped into all your life. Set it down and walk away from it, via a counsellor if needs be. When she starts the passive-aggressive thing about any subject you just say ”when I have something to tell you / want your input / whatever, I will absolutely ask, it’s great that you care, but I feel a bit coerced at the moment, so can we change the subject?” If that doesn’t work, terminate the visit or call and make no apologies. It will only have to happen a couple of times and yes she’ll moan and sob to others, but if anyone tries to intercede you just tell them you are bored with manipulation and thanks for the input but you’ve got this!

  14. sarah May 17 at 4:15 pm Reply Reply

    Oh! This is familiar! My dad’s side of the family, to the letter! We decided to tell my mom’s side at thanksgiving (8 weeks, w ultrasound) because they are supportive and functional and I was seeing Bruce Springsteen with my mom & NOT having beer would have been a dead giveaway. But we decided to wait to tell dad & his side because IF anything had gone awry they would not have been supportive, they would have made it about them somehow. And we would have ended up helping them through whatever hypothetical complication arose. So we waited. Drove through snomageddeon 2009 to get to dc, and when we saw them I “told them wrong.” Wasn’t facing the right person or something. It was infuriating, but clarifying: I was taking care of a child now, and in no way was I going to accept that kind of treatment. Boundaries: set. They would not be told when I was in labor, for fear they would race down, wait in a waiting room for hours, be impatient, and ask us for where to go to eat, directions, etc. They were disappointed, but accepted it. Then I actually WAS in labor for my dad’s birthday & HAD to call. Timed the call between contractions, he didn’t answer. Had my son the next day, which was father’s day. He was my second call;he didn’t answer that one either.
    I’ve never regret setting my boundaries, and they push them, and it’s hard, but it’s the best thing for my family. (therapy, too)

  15. Marnie May 17 at 5:40 pm Reply Reply

    Oh do I ever know how you are feeling. My mom declared that she felt she was losing me in a divorce when I got married. I was naive to how emotionally manipulated I had been until after I had my first of 3 children. I agree with Amy and previous posters, things will only get worse from here unless you learn to make boundaries. That means not allowing yourself to feel guilty for this whenshe tries to put it on you. I definitely suggest going to a therapist now to understand an emotionally healthy boundary as soon as possible. Post-partum hormones can be a real pain while trying to set boundaries.

    I also want to mention that since i have become a parent, I began to see my relationship with my mom so differently. Remind yourself that your family now is you, your husband and your baby. Make the decisions that are best for you, hubby and your baby. End of story. Good luck and congrats :)

  16. Athena May 17 at 7:19 pm Reply Reply

    Anyone trying to complain about not being told before the three-month mark doesn’t have much of a leg to stand on anyway. The chances of miscarriage is just so, so much higher before you cross the line into the second trimester. So much. I’m guessing that’s probably the reason you picked three months as when you want to share – so that you would actually *know*. Not just know there’s something in there, but know with something approaching a more reasonable certainty that that something was actually viable. If your mother tries to pitch a fit, just… tell her that? That is, arguably, as soon as you know anyway.

  17. C May 18 at 2:07 am Reply Reply

    I have a very painful relationship with a narcissistic mother and told her around 13 weeks for my pregnancy with my first and my current pregnancy. We told my inlaws around 12 weeks for both. I didn’t have any complaints from either about the timing and I think 12 weeks is a generally accepted time for sharing the news with friends and family. My sister, on the other hand, gave me a deadline when i should tell my mother about the first pregnancy because she said she didn’t want my nephew to have to withhold the news from his grandmother. If I didn’t meet the deadline, she was going to tell my mother for me. This was just another horrible episode in my relationship with my sister and I decided life was simply too short to deal with her. I guess that’s to say delivering the news can sometimes be the opposite of the happy experience it’s supposed to be. Therapy has been very helpful to me in dealing with these family dynamics.

  18. anon May 18 at 12:21 pm Reply Reply

    Babies and boundaries and guilt trips OH MY!

    HOOBOY did this ever resonate with me.

    I would like to strongly reiterate the advice that you 1) ONLY tell your mother prior to the start of the second trimester if she is someone you would confide in if something went wrong AND if you are comfortable that it is very possible that she will share your news before you are ready and/or with people you would not share it with this early.

    I would like to also encourage you to seek therapy during this time – pregnancy is difficult and stressful enough without the fun added bonus of a meddling and emotionally overbearing mother. I went to therapy for similar issues during my first two trimesters and it really did help to have an unbiased listener remind me that I was, in fact, entitled to privacy and distance and rest and PRIVACY. Did I say that twice? Yes because it was a hard, hard lesson for me to learn and I am still learning it,

    Prepare yourself for all sorts of annoying stuff as your pregnancy progresses. My mother felt entitled to know the baby’s name and I am sorry to say that I caved on that guilt trip. I still regret it, because my husband and I agreed not to tell and I owed him that. I did NOT cave on my mother’s REPEATED “helpful” offer to move in with us for a month. She clearly felt owed this time and let me tell you, she wasn’t. There were actually many reasons for me telling her no on this so perhaps that made it easier.

    Anyway, if I understand your mother and ho ho ho I think I do, you are probably in for some at best annoying times ahead and at worst some very stressful times ahead and some therapy or at least learning and repeating some boundary setting phrases now might help you later.

    Also, shore up your strength now on all the assloads of unsolicited advice that will start coming in – from your mother and elsewhere. I’m about to crack some skulls – baby is 7 months old and I got this. Yep, I really really got this.

    Anyway, best of luck to you – you are entitled to your privacy and as baby’s mama you know best. Remember these things, they will serve you well.

  19. Buttercup May 19 at 10:20 am Reply Reply

    This sounds like a really tough situation for you. My husband and I are both close to our families and chose not to tell either of them until the 12 week ultrasound both times. We just both felt better with the “we tell no one until we tell everyone” model.  Also, a good trick I used with my friends who were asking incessantly if I was pregnant was that (after explaining multiple times about miscarriage risk, etc, etc) I finally told them that every time they asked me I was going to answer “yes.” 

  20. Martha May 19 at 1:32 pm Reply Reply

    When I was pregnant with my daughter, we didn’t tell ANYONE until after we heard the heartbeat at my first OB appointment at 8 weeks. At that point we only told immediate family and swore them to secrecy until after the first ultrasound at 13 weeks.

    When I found out I was pregnant again, we told immediate family after my first appointment at 6 weeks when we saw the heartbeat. I had a miscarriage 3 weeks later and then had to tell everyone. 

    Having gone both routes, I recommend waiting a while. The “I had a miscarriage” talk is much more difficult than the “I’m pregnant and didn’t tell you immediately” talk. 

  21. OP May 19 at 5:40 pm Reply Reply

    Hey all! I’m the conflicted one that wrote in. Amy, THANK YOU- that was exactly what I needed to hear, down to the fact that witholding information from her might be my repeating the cycle of emotional manipulation. That realization was way above my self-awareness radar until you wrote it.

    An update- I’m currently 9.5 weeks now, and I decided to go ahead and give my mom a “grandmother” card for mother’s day while my dad and my sister were there. I figured at worst, it would be an opportunity to set boundaries early if it went south, and at best, it would be a time to see my mom step up.

    Her reaction was…predictable. She’s sworn up and down that she won’t tell anyone (surprised by that), but she hasn’t been exactly supportive. When I told her that I would need support in the next few weeks because this was a stressful time, she answered with “Don’t be such a pessimist, you wouldn’t have a miscarriage anyway.” She’s started hinting around at the fact that she wants to come to ultrasounds. She also started buying me onesies, and I told her I wasn’t comfortable having the baby shopped for yet, and she got my husband alone to complain about me not telling her that that’s what I’d want.

    Anyway. Thank you to everyone that commented- it’s comforting to have the support, and to know I’m not alone in dealing with this. That’s one of the hallmarks of this whole experience- feeling really isolated. I agree that a therapist would be really good for backup and dealing with things before I raise a family of my own. That’s been a long time coming. :)

    Thank you,
    M

  22. Grammy May 19 at 6:02 pm Reply Reply

    First, congratulations! Everyone here has already covered it very well. One thing that you should know right now: Your mother is not going to change.

    A woman who made you and your sister the adults in the relationship (that is what she did) so she could spend her life being a needy person who wasn’t responsible for anything is not ever going to turn into a nurturing, competent adult. When your baby is born she will be 1) jealous that the baby gets more attention than she does and 2) sad that no one lets her have a greater role in taking care of her grandchild.

    I know it’s hard and pregnancy is a time when it would be wonderful to have a supportive, caring mom, but that’s not what you have. Rejoice that you have a good husband, a baby on the way, and a chance to have a healthy and wonderful relationship with your child. It’s your turn to have the family you want and deserve to have.

    Your mother will have to cope with it in whatever way she does, and you don’t have to let her spoil it for you.

  23. nora1 May 21 at 10:04 am Reply Reply

    Hi, congratulations on your pregnancy, others have already said all that needs to be said, and yet I want to chime in too to say that I really felt that I understood your situation and what it’s like not to want to tell your mother about your pregnancy. I also felt terribly conflicted and pressured about revealing my pregnancies to my mother and put it off as long as possible – 16 weeks the first time, 14 weeks the second. My mother has always been difficult but it wasn’t until my second child that I realised she was actually narcissistic (for a pretty good description, read here http://www.daughtersofnarcissisticmothers.com/characteristics-of-narcissistic-mothers.html). And just to confirm what everyone else has said, your mother’s behaviour is not going to improve, so improving the situation is going to be all about your own actions. For me, education and self-care have helped. Counselling or therapy is probably a great suggestion too. I do want to say that it is not about trying to ‘punish’ your mother but simply learning to deal with her behaviour and stay sane, whatever that takes. One good thing is that with motherhood comes a new awareness of your own inner resources and strength. Good luck.

  24. DontBlameTheKids May 22 at 9:35 am Reply Reply

    For me, the three months rule is about who you would tell if you miscarried. If you would want your mom to know, then yes, tell her. If the thought of telling her about a miscarriage makes you ill, then keep it to yourself. I told my mom when I was 6 weeks pregnant with my first. I told her when I was 4 months pregnant with my second.

  25. Emily Jun 11 at 3:46 pm Reply Reply

    My mom is the queen of emotional vampires. I’m also an only child and so…yeah. I feel you. I had a miscarriage when we were trying for our second child and we had told EVERYONE right away. And UN-telling everyone was one of the worst experiences ever. So, we decided if we got pregnant again after that, we would wait at least until we’d found the heartbeat before we told anyone–which we did at about 10 weeks. Everyone was thrilled and totally understanding except for my mother who was all, “BOO HOO, YOU DIDN’T TELL MEEEE????? When I got pregnant MY mother was the first one to know!” It sucks to have to keep being the adult always and forever but be the adult, and know that even in the face of her antics this is your news and you are totally entitled to share it (or not) with anyone you want exactly when YOU want to share.

    Also, dealing with her will be good practice for dealing with your future children once they begin acting like this. ;) Good luck!

  26. Lorraine Oct 09 at 2:47 pm Reply Reply

    I find this story INCREDIBLY intriguing because I am just now 11 weeks pregnant, and I told my mom RIGHT away when I found at at FOUR weeks. Her response was, “How far along are you, three months?” And I replied “uuuh, no, four weeks.”  She gave me a raised eye brow and said something like, “You know, there are protocols to these things. Usually people wait until after the first trimester to tell people.” Which made me feel shitty in a whole different way, so…. Thanks mom! 

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